County Left is located on some of the richest soils in the world, in the basin of the Great Lakes. We live and work on the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee, Anishinabeweki, and Mississauga Nations.
The land in our area is highly sought after by developers, which means land prices are out of our reach as farmers. In fact, the parcel of land directly across from our farm is currently being developed…we've watched from our back porch as this farmland was sold, scraped of topsoil, waterways altered, soon to be townhouses.
We rent the space for County Left from our wonderful landlords. We know this access to good soil and plentiful land is a great privilege, considering the history of the area and the current political and economic climate that values for-profit development above many things.
County Left is run by Angelina Reesor and Kyle Warren. We met each other while working at a Toronto farmer’s market in 2018. We spent that summer flirting back and forth between our produce stalls. It didn’t take long before we were dreaming up County Left, and here we are!
I (Angelina) grew up in Scarborough on my families’ farm. I absorbed years of inspiration from my father's farm business and my mother’s homesteading skills and spent lots of time learning from both of them. I studied holistic nutrition before I decided that my interest in food was more about an interest in food security, local economy, and self-sufficiency. I learned market garden practices by working for a few different farm businesses starting in 2015. I love growing food because I love being outside, it is practical and so tangible, teaches me patience and gratitude, and because I love to eat what we’ve grown ourselves! When I’m not doing farm stuff, I’ll probably be eating buttery popcorn, planning my next potluck, or hanging out with pals.
Kyle’s interest in farming began at a young age while growing up in a rural community and from time spent on a neighbours’ dairy farm before and after school. He ignored this interest well into adulthood until he read some books about our food system, planted a garden and quickly decided to quit his job and go back to school. In 2012, he completed the sustainable farming program at Fleming and continued to work on vegetable farms until we decided to start County Left. Kyle loves the challenge of managing a diversified vegetable farm and experimenting with growing new crops. In many ways, being able to farm is a privilege and is something he’s usually grateful for, as imagining any other life at this point seems like a lot less fun. Outside of farming, you can find Kyle doing crossword or soduko puzzles preferably by a woodfire, while listening to weird jazz from Toronto’s music scene.
Together; we love to cook & eat, we love to dream up community events, and we both have been drawn to farming for the lifestyle it provides.
OUR FARMING PRACTICES
We strive to grow food in a way that is respectful to the soil, the ecology, and our human community. We adhere to organic farming standards even though we have chosen not to certify our farm. We take time and care to grow our crops in accordance with our values.
County Left is on three acres of land, one of those acres is in vegetable production and the other two are for our crop rotations and remain in cover crops during the season. We farm at a hand scale, mainly using small tools and a walk-behind tractor. We take care to figure out by research and observation what the land may need from us in order to produce good food for our community. That usually looks like lots of compost, minimal tillage, and keeping the soil covered and nourished with cover crops.